How to get notified about fire evacuations in your area
Updated: 4:05 pm
The California Office of Emergency Services is now sending emergency alerts through what's known as the Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) system. In order to get these alerts, you must have Emergency Alerts turned on in your phone's settings.
There is no centralized alert system in Southern California to notify residents about fire evacuation orders.
Rather, each county in the region – Los Angeles, Orange, Ventura, San Bernardino and Riverside – has its own text alert system.
Here’s a breakdown of some of those systems, and how to opt in.
Ventura County's emergency alert system is called VC Alert. You can sign up here.
VC Alert uses 911 databases from telephone companies, so most land lines will already be in the system.
Here are some additional resources for staying up-to-date with mandatory evacuations, shelters, road closures and more:
- The Fire and Sheriff’s departments are directing people to ReadyVenturaCounty.org for information on the Thomas Fire. The website is being updated with the latest mandatory and voluntary evacuation areas.
- You can call the Incident Hotline to hear recorded information on the fire: (805) 465-6650
- Ventura County also has an emergency alert system called VC Alert which “enables officials to provide essential information quickly when there is a threat to the health or safety of residents.” More information can be found here.
- Social media accounts for staying up-to-date:
Los Angeles County
You can sign up for a system called Alert L.A. County, which the county says "is used to contact county residents and businesses via recorded phone messages, text messages or e-mail messages in case of emergency." You can sign up here.
The L.A. County Fire Department also posts regular updates on its Twitter account.
The City of L.A. also has a mass notification system, NotifyLA. You can sign up here, or text READY to 888-777.
The Los Angeles Fire Department also puts regular updates on its Twitter account.
Santa Barbara County
You can sign up for Santa Barbara County's emergency alert system here.
You can also follow Santa Barbara County's Office of Emergency Management on Twitter.
Orange County uses AlertOC, "a mass notification system designed to keep ... residents and businesses informed of emergencies and certain community events." You can sign up here.
AlertOC uses 911 databases from telephone companies, so most land lines will already be in the system.
San Bernardino County
In San Bernardino County, the emergency alert system is called Telephone Emergency Notification System (TENS). You can sign up here.
TENS uses 911 databases from telephone companies, so most land lines will already be in the system.
Riverside County uses a system called Alert RivCo to "alert Riverside County community members of urgent actions to take during disasters, such as earthquakes, wildfires, and floods." You can sign up here.
Alert RivCo uses 911 databases from telephone companies, so most land lines will already be in the system.
San Luis Obispo County
The San Luis Obispo County Sheriff's Office has a Reverse 9-1-1 alert system. You can sign up here.
You can get updated information on all of the fires in Southern California by following KPCC's coverage here.
This story has been updated.